FICTION: Younger people can require long term care due to severe unexpected accidents, diseases, illnesses or injuries. The need for long term care can happen at any time during a person’s life. A person will officially need long term care when a licensed healthcare provider certifies they need help doing at least two of the ADLs (Activities for Daily Living) for a period expected to last at least 90 days. ADLs include six specific items: bathing, incontinence, dressing, eating, toileting and transferring. Needing help with just two of the ADLs for at least 90 days triggers the need for long-term care. If your family isn’t providing the care, you will end up paying for it – either out of pocket or through your long-term care insurance.
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FICTION: Most people think that long-term care needs are covered under Medicare or Medicaid – this is NOT true. Medicare pays for skilled care in a nursing home only for short periods of time – up to 100 days. This care is for your recuperation following a hospital stay for a related condition. Once your care needs stabilize, and you need personal or custodial care, Medicare will not pay these costs. Medicare will only pay for care at home under very limited circumstances. Medicaid pays for long term care only for people with very low assets and limited income.
Find out more details about what is covered and what isn’t at our Family Caregiving Challenge Seminar on December 1st. Register here!
FICTION: This is a common misconception – long term care is NOT covered by other kinds of insurance, including your HMO, health or long term disability insurance. Health insurance pays to cure us (skilled care) with care provided by someone with a license: physicians, nurses, physical therapists, respiratory therapists, x-ray technicians and pharmacists. Since most long term care is unskilled care or custodial care, health insurance does not cover it. Only long term care insurance you usually purchase on your own covers day-to-day personal care assistance when you are unable to perform everyday activities like bathing and dressing.
There are many misconceptions about long-term care. Learn more at our Family Caregiving Challenge Seminar on December 1st. Register here!